Fast food businesses have long been major contributors to waste in landfills due to their reliance on disposable plates, cups, and cutlery (not traditionally made from sustainable materials). That has resulted in a lot of waste and damage to the environment, but companies are joining environmental efforts to lessen their carbon footprint in response to the rising worldwide demand for more sustainable fast food solutions.
The company’s environmental efforts center on climate change, packaging, and waste. They are also concerned with water stewardship, which includes both water conservation and responsible and efficient water use.
“To secure a thriving food system for the future, the food industry has an opportunity and responsibility to help mitigate the impacts of climate change and find more sustainable ways to feed people,”
Francesca DeBiase, executive vice president and chief supply chain officer at McDonald’s
Their climate activity includes a reduction of absolute emissions of 8.5% from their restaurants and offices and a reduction of roughly 6% from their supply chains as compared to their 2015 baseline. As of the year 2020, 99.6 percent of the beef, palm oil, and coffee they purchased were from sources that didn’t contribute to deforestation in any way. McDonald’s is dedicated to sustainable practices in the fishing industry, as seen by its exclusive use of seafood from sustainable, third-party verified fisheries.
Perhaps most significantly, the firm has committed to sourcing 100% of its packaging from renewable, recycled, or certified sources by the year 2025. Currently, 80% of the company’s packaging materials are derived from fiber resources. In addition, 25% of their restaurants in the top 30 markets have a recycling option, with 100% of their restaurants meeting the criteria for being considered “eco-friendly” by the year 2025.
Resource positivity is a top priority for Starbucks, which means the company will eventually contribute more to the environment than it consumes. That means absorbing more carbon dioxide than they release, reducing the amount of trash transported to landfills (both from retail and production operations), and reducing water consumption while increasing water supplies. That amounts on paper to a fifty percent reduction in carbon, water, and trash output by the year 2030. By the year 2050, they want to have universalized the use of reusable cups.
Since Starbucks is committed to providing customers with sustainably sourced coffee, you can feel good about purchasing your morning pick-me-up from them. As part of their “10-year, 100 million” tree promise, Starbucks has given away approximately 50 million coffee trees to farmers in the previous five years alone. In addition, this year Starbucks began testing initiatives to cut water consumption by up to 80% during the coffee-roasting process in Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, Rwanda, and Kenya. By purchasing updated mills, they achieved their goal.
‘Preserve our planet’ is Subway’s environmental motto. The plan’s twin goal is to lessen their effect on the environment and protect the state of the world. They hope that by promoting sustainable agricultural practices, they may assist rural people in safeguarding and bettering their own living conditions. Protecting agricultural biodiversity, water supplies, and air quality are all essential parts of this. The welfare of the farm animals that are a part of their supply chain is also a priority for the company.
Subway has won the sustainable packaging race because of the fact that the vast majority of its paper packaging is manufactured from recycled materials and the company has altered products to use less material. The company uses only recycled materials in their products, such as 100% recycled fiber napkins and 40% post-consumer fiber in their sandwich wraps (though their specialty sandwich pouches and bags are made of 50 percent post-consumer fiber). Their salad bowls and covers are also produced from recycled materials; 25% of each is manufactured from PET plastic bottles. The trays and covers used in catering are likewise manufactured with 25% post-consumer waste content.
By the year 2050, Domino’s plans to have eliminated all emissions from its global operations. After all, “Do the right thing” is a central belief in their culture. Their business model is predicated on the idea that safeguarding the environment for future generations is the moral thing to do for their clients, employees, and shareholders. Their natural gas ovens are more efficient now that they have access to cutting-edge technologies and innovations, which helps them reduce their carbon impact. As a sustainable fast food chain, they are considering new water monitoring systems and conservation initiatives.
Domino’s also has an interest in reducing its impact on the environment by reducing the use of resources like cardboard and leftover pizza dough. Domino’s upped the percentage of recycled material in its packaging from 40 percent in 2019 to 70 percent in 2020. (the other 30 percent comes from responsibly managed forests). If you purchase pizza from them and any cheese or grease adheres to the box, don’t throw it out; the cardboard may be recycled up to seven times. Domino’s wants more people to know how simple it is to recycle pizza boxes. Another thing you probably weren’t aware of could be recycled. Container seals.